Britain loves a sale and no sale is bigger than the January Sale. Shopping online might have changed buying patterns and in direct sales it is ‘sales time’ all year round…Are you tired of ambiguous Half Price Sales? Or Sale must end Sunday tactics?

Most Brits still believe that January is a genuine sale period. There are more beds sold in January than at any other time of year. So how do you make sure that what you buy is a genuine bargain? Don’t be caught napping – here’s our guide to bagging a great bed at a great price.

Before heading out to the join in the nation’s January sales frenzy, think about what you are looking for in replacing your bed.

What type of bed are you looking for, box divan, drawer divan or bed surround? Do you really need under-bed storage? What type of mattress? Are you thinking about changing bed size? Do you struggle to get into or out of your bed?

So many people buy beds on price alone, only to be disappointed once they get it home or have it delivered, finding it uncomfortable or offers little better support than the bed they are replacing. The idea of buying a new bed in the January Sales, is that you hope to buy, either a bed that you would buy at any other time of the year but reduced in the sale, or that you are looking for a genuine bargain, something too good to miss, a luxurious bed at a fraction of the cost. Beware of Half Price sales. For a product to be sold at Half price it must have been advertised for at least 28 days before at full price. Ask for proof if you are unsure. Avoid any companies that advertise Half Price Sales without also displaying the genuine full price too. The British buying public are sometimes too hungry for a bargain and some bargains are not always what they seem.

Whilst budget cannot be ignored, remember that we spend a third of our lives in bed. It’s important that we get a good night’s sleep every night and being comfortable and warm in bed is where it begins.

Did you realise that a couple sleeping in a standard 4’6” double bed, have no more width than can be found in a child’s cot?

Many people take the opportunity to trade-up in bed size, but make sure that your new bed will fit into your bedroom and more importantly if your bedroom is upstairs, that the bed can actually be carried up the stairs. Don’t get too carried away upsizing your bed, as this also carries the extra cost of new bedding. The savings you thought you had made, end up being spent on new bedding.

Divan drawers are a great idea and can hold plenty of storage, if space is at a premium, but they do increase the cost of the bed base. Could your money be better invested in a better quality mattress?

NBF Stockist Rise Furniture and MobilityWhatever bed you settle for, you want a bed that is safe and clean. Always look for the NBF Approved logo, which means that the bed and mattress has been rigorously tested to ensure it meets flammability, cleanliness and trade description regulations.

Once in the showroom, don’t be embarrassed about lying on the bed, simply sitting on the edge and patting the mattress, will not give you an impression of the beds comfort level. Take your time, your bed is an investment in your well -being and choosing carefully should give you many years of comfort and service.

It’s important to try different mattresses, as different materials and foams give varying comfort levels. If you and your partner prefer different comfort levels, a dual bed is great compromise. Dual beds are simply two single beds fastened together and can still use double bedding and duvets and share a double headboard. Most bed stores display their beds without pillows, to show off the bed, but don’t be afraid to ask for a pillow, so you can try the bed as you would use it at home.

If you are considering buying online, it is worth trying to visit a store that sells the same bed and trying it beforehand. Buying a bed online and untried really can be a gamble unless you are buying a recognised brand from a reputable retailer, but even then, you may find the bed unsuitable. Even beds can fall victims of counterfeiting and fake branding. Returning beds can be expensive and inconvenient. Check delivery costs and returns policy as online retailers can have different rules on returning goods, so establish their terms and conditions before starting your shopping.

If you are concerned about the stampeding hoards; running amok through the showroom or spending hours driving round car parks, looking for that elusive parking space nearest the door, or perhaps you are unable to visit a local showroom, there are reputable companies that will (by appointment) bring their bed to your home for you to try out. This is easy to arrange over a phone call or booking an appointment over the internet. The bed company will visit your home, set up the bed for you to try without feeling rushed. Remember you will have the sales persons undivided attention.

What is an adjustable bed?

More and more people are choosing electrically operated adjustable beds. These are built in a completely different manner to traditional beds. The mattress sits upon beech slats inside a bed frame that fits on the divan the bed surround.

Adjustable beds allow you to adjust your position in bed whether lying, sitting or getting into and out of bed by lowering or raising the mattress. Electric motors operated by a hand control, allow you to find the most suitable position and can help raise you towards a standing position. Mattresses can also be fitted with built-in multi-point massage feature. This feature should be avoided if anyone using the bed has a pacemaker fitted.

Most ordinary mattresses are not suitable for adjustable beds, so it is vital to consider the benefits of the various adjustable bed mattresses available. Being able to adjust the back position is useful for anyone suffering with acid reflux or snoring, whilst raising the feet is known to improve circulation and reduce leg and ankle swelling.

A good night’s sleep is important for everyone, but problems such as arthritis and sciatica can make sleeping impossible for some people. Medical conditions and other ailments can make finding a comfortable sleeping position difficult. An adjustable bed can often rectify this problem, enabling a person to change position, until they find a position, that’s relaxing and restful.

Adjustable beds can be bought as single beds, dual and double beds. The benefits of a dual bed being that one person can sit comfortably, upright in bed whilst their partner could be laying flat. Another feature of dual beds being couples can choose differing mattress types and comfort levels.

If you are thinking of buying an adjustable bed, think of it as an investment. It is a specialist bed designed to help you, if struggle or find it difficult to get into or get out of an ordinary bed safely or confidently.

Be mindful that no matter how expensive the bed base is, it will not add to the overall comfort of the bed. The largest expense with any bed is always the mattress.

Technology has dramatically changed mattress construction over the recent decades. Traditional pocket sprung mattresses, offering several thousand pocketed, coil springs are once more en-vogue, after decades of multi-layer reflex, memory and latex combinations. Although a mattress should chosen that suits your needs and sleep habits.

Disposing of your old bed is one more thing to think about, will the company selling you a new bed, dispose of your old bed responsibly? Whilst local charities are happy to take your bed base most mattresses must go to landfill. Choose a reliable company who offers a collection service. They are more likely to collect and remove your old bed, the same day and before installing your new bed. Nobody wants to be sleeping on the floor until their new January Sale bed arrives having disposed of their previous bed the day before.

What about mattress protection? Will you choose a mattress that can be turned or rotated? If buying a mattress protector, is it important that it is fitted before you use the bed. A mattress protector can be removed and washed regularly and will reduce the amount of dust mite faecal matter that builds up in the mattress over the years of use. This is particularly beneficial for anyone suffering from chest conditions such as asthma. However, a protector will not add comfort to the mattress.

So now you are ready to hit the sales and go get the bed of your dreams. Remember that a £1000 bed costs less than 40 pence a night over seven years – or only 20 pence each if two people are sharing – now that’s a real bargain!

Happy Hunting!